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  • hi, I absolutely LOVE wordpress as a blogging solution, and I would like to use it as the blog section of a content management system I am developing, but I would like to know the legal stuff of doing so.

    first of all can I use it? can I charge if I sell the cms system? do I have to supply all my code when I distribute it?

    any and all information on doing this would be greatly appreciated.



Viewing 7 replies - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
  • If you plan on selling your solution, I believe your solution would have to be GPL if WP is a component of the system. So make sure you understand GPL.

    IANAL, but here’s the gist as I understand it. You can sell your software. You can charge outrageous amounts for it. You can sell your services as well. But you MUST license the entirety under GPL, and following GPL rules you MUST notify purchasers that the code is GPL and that full source is available (if not already made available), and you MUST deliver it for free to anyone who has purchased your system. In addition, anyone who gets the source code, because it is GPL, is free to do whatever they want with it — including putting it up on an FTP site for anyone to download for free…

    That’s not a perfect representation of the GPL, but a quick synopsis. Read the GPL license included with WP, read the more detailed breakdowns online, understand what the benefits and limitations and requirements are…


    Have you read the file called “license.txt” that comes in the default wordpress install? Your questions are answered there. 🙂

    thanks I’m looking at that now…

    but i have a tricky question:

    my cms solution is in .net, so I’m not using any of the source code for wordpress. I have not looked at it nor will I use ANY portion of it when I add it to my cms. do I still have to follow this license?

    I guess what I’m asking is that I’m not going to EXTEND or MODIFY wordpress, I’m going to PORT it, but by building my own custom set of pages and scripts to access the database.

    so what does that mean for me? I really don’t want to give away my source code, but I don’t know how the rules would apply in my situation. I might just have to make up my own blog database or something and ditch wordpress altogether…

    thanks for your insight

    PORT == derivative work == falls under GPL.

    if you won’t “use ANY portion” of WP, then you aren’t using WP! 😉 So, your entire question/statement makes no sense.

    It sounds like you want to use ASP/.NET instead of PHP, but somehow retain the core logic and DB structure. Well, you can’t retain the core logic, it’s all in PHP. So you’re really talking about completely building your own blog, potentially ‘porting’ the logic from PHP to .NET/C#/ASP/Whatever? Yeah, that’s still a ‘derivative work’, still covered by GPL.

    If you find any blog system GPL’d, same issues will apply. If you don’t want those issues, code it from scratch yourself…


    so to make sure I understand, even just using the db structure would still fall under the gpl, right? I’m not literally “porting” the code, because I don’t understand php and won’t even be looking at the logic. I will be coding the access and everything from scratch, I just want to use the wp database.

    why? because I want to use my blog that is already saved in a wp database, but in I guess it’s not that much of a leap to just make the db, then some script to transfer the entries between db. would I be clean then?


    If you are thinking of selling a solution based off the WP database structure, I’d ask someone with real legal knowledge. I couldn’t give advice.

    If you are PRIVATELY using a WP blog database that you set up, for your own blog, and build your own ASP code around it, and NEVER SELL IT, you’re likely fine to do so. Just realize the moment you might want to sell something, you’re back up against potential GPL issues, which would hit the entire ‘CMS product’ you are talking about.

    Building a blog system from scratch isn’t rocket science, it’s just hard work. Go build the data structure you’d make if you were building from scratch (‘clean room’, without basing off of WP), and then write a converter to bring over your blog entries. Simple enough.


    the wordpress database would be for a blog which will be one component of the cms. the cms as a whole will have its own db structure.

    i think i will go ahead and build a custom blog solution just to be on the safe side…

    however I would like to make a “plugin” that can read the wordpress db structure, would I only have to follow the GPL for that plugin or would the whole cms fall under it now?

    thanks for your advice, I really appreciate it


Viewing 7 replies - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
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